I have been spending a lot of time following the situation in Ukraine. There are now some interesting blogs devoted to it and some twitter hashtags. Twitter can be a useful source of information, or rather, a way of flagging useful information. The new google translation system helps a lot in translating material out of Russian and other languages.
It is quite a story, although it requires some effort to piece together. Even on twitter, the propaganda networks trollbots work hard try to spread sarcasm and misinformation. Yet a lot of the misinformation is just mentally inadequate people who are sympathetic to the Donbass rebellion but are pretending that what they would like to happen is really happening.
You can see a lot on Youtube as well, often with English subtitles. Some of it is very disturbing. A young mother and her child laying on the ground, dead, cut wide open like butchered hogs by cluster munitions. An old woman, literally cut in two and still alive, asking someone to find her purse and hand it to her.
Women who have been raped and tortured to death, their hands still tied, pulled out of mass graves. People being dragged to ditches, thrown in and shot, and covered over with dirt, with no one checking if they are really dead yet.
Nazis. They are supposed to belong to some past age, like the inquisition or Attila the Hun. They are alive and well and living in Ukraine. Of course it is good politics for them to formally deny that they are Nazis but their organizations are the direct descendants of the Banderite militias of world war two who worked under the direction of the Gestapo.
Actually, you could say they were the Nazi's Frankensteins because they had ideas for an independent Ukraine. The German Nazis had other ideas and finally had to break up the Banderites and imprison the leaders. Later these people worked for the American CIA to try to destabilize the Soviet government in Ukraine.
As well, the Americans moved many of these Banderists to safe havens in North America. It seems there was a big colony of them in Alberta, which might account for some of the "eliminate the untermenschen" politics there. Actually, Alberta's history with Nazi type groups goes back to the Social Cretin, er, Social Credit government of the 1930s. with its connections to the Oswald Mosley "Green shirts" in England.
But that is another story. The children of these Banderists back-migrated to Ukraine after the fall of the Soviet Union, working with western intelligence agencies to destabilize, to foment nationalism. They use the tried and true fascist methods of propaganda and intimidation. It is as with Hitler's party, who only won elections after they had eliminated, intimidated, or infiltrated, all opposition.
Ukrainian nationalism is nonsense. The Ukrainian language is only a dialect of Russian. Many of the fascist leaders who say they would like to kill every "Moskal" in Ukraine, cannot speak proper Ukrainian. The whole Ukrainian identity was invented by the Austro-Hungarian empire in the later 19th century as a way of keeping its Russian speaking subjects from identifying with the Russian Tsarist state east of the Don. It has been promoted by every enemy of a unified Russia from the Nazis to NATO.
We can go all through the history of the cold war to get to where we are now. We are not on the verge of another cold war. We are looking at a hot war; thermonuclear hot. The conflict is shaping up between the Eurasian alliance, led by Russia and China, and the Atlanticists, the old imperial powers of America and Europe.
Now, there is a great debate going on underneath this conflict, about whether the Atlanticists are consolidating or collapsing. If you listen closely to those who think the former, their problem is they are still inside the informational bubble of the Atlanticists propaganda machine, even while they hysterically denounce it. It is like the Atlanticist propaganda shell or "bubble" has multiple layers.
Most so-called "independent" or "conspiracy" media is just an outer layer, a "catch-all" layer. It encourages despair among those who are driven to rage by the capitalist system. You have to ask these people why they continue to frantically denounce the closing in of a totalitarian order if they think it is invincible. Logically, if you thought that you would keep your mouth shut and look for some place to hide out.
However, the view from outside the bubble is the exact opposite. These people have had full control for generations. There never was any past golden age of a real democracy. That their methods of control are becoming more drastic, and their system is becoming more obvious, is because it is starting to fall apart.
The reasons why it is falling apart are quite varied and unclear, but it seems a lot of it is just what old Marx predicted; it has reached a crisis of profitability. Since the capitalist system began to develop several centuries ago, it has depended on expansion to create the new money to pay off the interest on previous loans. The power of production has been fully developed. There is no room for further growth. Any new efficiency has to go to increasing leisure rather than to increasing output and profits.
We could get into an enormous debate about the above, with advocates of every crackpot economic theory around, most of which are still predicated on the truisms of capitalism. My argument is that we are, one way or another, going back to pre-liberal economics, and the rules of pre capitalist society, where nothing grows except at the expense of something else.
Russia and China, and some of its smaller allies, are planned economies capable of adapting to this. This is why they are under such fierce attack. In many other countries there is still a very capitalistic economy, but local elites are starting to ask themselves why they need to subordinate themselves to American and European banks. They are keeping what wealth their countries produce to themselves.
The American elite has destroyed its domestic economy by destroying its industrial capacity. They had the idea that the economy was all about finance. Manufacturing does not matter; that could be done anywhere. Educating the next generation does not matter; they could draw the best from around the world because they own the world. They have owned the world through their control of the worlds's "reserve currency".
This is the mentality of financial capitalists. They see war and chaos as opportunity and see no down side to it. Earlier industrial capitalists saw as many downs as ups to war and conflict and tried to avoid it. Now the Atlantean financial capitalists have hit the wall. Everywhere people are moving away from the dollar.
The Atlanteans only way out of this dilemma is to start an all out war with the center of this rival world order; China and Russia. They had thought with the end of the cold war that they had won, and they would absorb the pieces of the old Soviet Union and draw the Chinese into their system. It did not work that way.
Now they are trying to start a war in order to isolate and surround their rivals, and to create justification for the extreme measures they want to apply at home. But that is not working out for them, either. They are finding it impossible to get real cooperation in getting the war started. The public in Europe and North American cannot be brought onside.
Worst of all, The Pentagon is getting very tired of being dragged into unwinnable wars. It is in favor of a global system of security, but are tired of the incompetent, ad hoc planning of the neo-con and liberal interventionist elite. It flatly refused to go along with a plan to attack Iran in 2011. This so far has been the high point in the push for a third world war.
Since then the real risk of a world war has been declining somewhat, even though the Atlanteans keep pushing. The Russians and Chinese have started pushing back hard. They have been successful as well, trumping every scheme the Atlanteans have tried, from the aborted invasion of Syria to the attempt to seize the Russian bases in Crimea.
All this fits well with the well known pattern of sociopathic bullying at an individual or group level. We have had a submission phase and now we are in the elimination phase. If the Atlanteans fail to eliminate Russia as a "threat" to them, they are finished.
In the classic development of a sociopathic attack on someone threatening the dominance of the master bully or bullies, the target is subjected to low level harassment and isolation. The aim is to force he or she to either give in and adopt a codependent relation with the power structure, or to go away.
When the target finally raises the flag and demands that the harassment stop, the elimination stage begins. This is an all out effort to demonize the target, turn the situation upside down so that the target is made the aggressor, regardless of the facts. The object is to make the target blow his or her cool and do things that can be used to trigger elimination, which may be by firing, swarming, or other assault. If the target is able to defeat the attack, the under bullies will be themselves eliminated and the over bullies will tend to fade into the background, or quietly remove themselves.
What is going on in Ukraine now is elimination. Putin has handled his and Russia's cause perfectly. The Atlanteans have done everything to create an excuse to attack and have only succeeded in making themselves look like the incompetent cretins they are. Their sanctions, their false flag shoot down of an air liner, and their terrorizing of Donbass have all blown back in their faces.
Some sort of war between Russia and the US is inevitable. It could very easily go nuclear, given the new US policy of giving military commanders discretion over whether to use nuclear weapons. The Eurasian powers have themselves fairly well barricaded against at Atlantean attack. The two biggest ones have adequate nuclear deterrents.
The popular idea of a nuclear war is that both sides fire off their rockets and then cockroaches inherit the charred earth. The stratagems are much more complicated than that. The ultimate aim is to position your rockets so that you can take out the enemy's nuclear force before they can be launched; a "first strike capacity ".
China and Russia have a deep enough territory that a successful first strike on them would be almost impossible. But the USA appears to be trying with Russia; creating a lot of bullshit excuses for creating bases close to Russia's borders which could quickly become sites for nuclear weapons. A ballistic rocket based in eastern Ukraine could hit Moscow with 20 minutes warning.
Another strategem is "nuclear blackmail" or "Scorched earth". For example, one of the ways the USA kept Europe in line during the cold war, and got them to commit to high defense spending, was the threat of wiping them out with nuclear missiles if the Russian army looked like it was going to defeat NATO and occupy Europe.
Suppose the USA launched a nuclear strike on Iran. What would Russia and China do? What if the US announced that any country that maintained friendly relations with Russia and China would be attacked with nuclear weapons? Would Russia and China risk their own cities to protect their unarmed allies? What if they announced that they would attack any non nuclear armed country allying with the US?
The most worrisome thing is the toleration of religious fundamentalists in the American Armed forces. There is information about organized religious proselytizing in the army, and efforts to gain control of nuclear units. There is some turmoil within the American military about such people, and the political backing they have from the extreme, "end of times", religions. Imagine the US nuclear force, or a big part of it, under control of some religious maniacs who have no fear of nuclear annihilation because they think they will "raptured" up to heaven on the day of Armageddon if the ungodly do not submit to them.
Almost certainly, however, the US will back off at the last minute. All through the cold war, the American elite were obsessed with the idea of "brinkmanship". They expected their presidents to be willing to go right to the brink of a nuclear war to extract concessions from the Soviet Union. It never worked. The Soviets never backed down. The USA always had to use it's media machine to cover the fact that it had been forced to back off once again. This is part of the reason they never learned by these experiences; they believed their own propaganda from the last time.
So, what we have here is a situation of a standoff between some sane and sober people governing Russia, and the kind of leaders who result from unrestrained capitalism still in control of the USA and western Europe. The latter are rich boys who are insulated from reality and convinced they have their status because they are biologically superior to everyone else. Many are also psychopaths.
These people will not notice they are losing until everything comes crashing down around them. Right now they think they are in another period of adjustment, such as the crises of the 1930s and 1970s, when they had to adapt to change. Maybe they will find a way to adapt this time, but they will also adapt to powers which they cannot eliminate, namely Russia and China.
However, one way they tend to try to deal with resistance is to create Nazi-like movements, despite their past tendency of such movements to run out of control of their creators. The children and grand children of the Nazis worked under CIA programs such as 'gladio' to keep control of Europe during the cold war.
This brings us back to the frothing-at-the-mouth Ukrainian nationalists who US and NATO intelligence groups are using to create a base in Ukraine from which to go after Russia. As discussed, they are failing spectacularly. But they are causing enormous grief to the Ukrainian people.
However, like people anywhere, it is up to the Ukrainian people to finally wake up and learn to use their brains, and to learn to fight for their own freedom. They seem to be starting to do that. Resistance seems to be lead by factions of the goon squads who are starting to realize how they are being manipulated and are turning on their western handlers. NATO is having to bring in foreigners to run the Ukrainian government because no minimally competent native Ukrainians will work for them.
It seems like the coup in Ukraine will fall apart in a few months. But this is cold comfort to the people of the Donbass. They are being terribly punished by the "punishment battalions" for daring to stand up and try to take control of their own lives. It is a superb example of popular power against vicious tyranny, but which was almost stamped out.
Simply because they tried to assert their own destiny, they are being punished as a warning to others. The aims of the Kiev regime's war in Donbass are, since they cannot defeat the local militia, threefold.
One is to try to goad Russia into direct intervention. The Russian leadership is too smart for that. The Russian followership is smart enough to realize what the game is and to support their leaders.
The second is to warn any other provinces of Donbass of the consequences if they should try the same thing. Over and over, the Banderite Nazi militias hide behind the regular Ukrainian army to bombard the infrastructure of the rebel territory, to make life impossible for the civilian population, so that they flee or turn on their leaders. They would really like to depopulate the whole area, which they see as worthless.
The third is to create justification for their tyranny, and an enemy to frighten the people of east Ukraine with. The brave Ukrainian army is fending off an invasion of Russian regular soldiers disguised as a popular uprising. That this is complete nonsense is known to anyone who follows reporters who report from the combat positions, hospitals, and breadlines of Donetsk and Lugansk, instead of from a hotel room in Kiev.
However, it is hard to get outsiders to believe that the local population was able to organize a referendum to leave Ukraine, under pressure from goons trucked in from Eastern Ukraine. Or that coal miners, truck drivers, and store clerks left their jobs and created an effective citizen militia that within a few months had defeated a national army.
The people of Donbass are now in the process of creating an effective government. This in spite of all the infighting and cooptation attempts, and the impossibility of any outside support except on a strictly private and non profit level. This in spite of the horrible price they are being made to pay for doing exactly what elites all over the world fear most.
Now that I have set the context of this story, hopefully neutralizing all the crap put out in the mainstream media about it, I can get into the story itself. How this all developed is worth studying by those who study democratic revolutions, as opposed to ideological revolutions. But it is worth a blog essay in itself. Right now I have some other stuff to do, but by the end of the year I will review my archive on the Donbass rebellion and present the story.